Police urge vigilance this anniversary weekend

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - An unconfirmed 9/11 terror threat for DC and New York involving car bombs this weekend has many on edge, Including here in central Virginia. State Police were already planning for this anniversary weekend and will have extra troopers out and about, especially at major events in Virginia.

Even the racetrack here in Richmond is on alert. This event always falls on the September 11 anniversary, and there has been heightened awareness ever since the terrorist attacks.

The power of the engines at Richmond  International Raceway resemble the American attitude this September 11th weekend: Turning it up, not backing down.

"Not worried at all, having a very good time. I feel very safe with all the police and fire personnel around here. I think we're in good hands," added Steve Patterson.

"You've got to live. No matter what you've got to live, and you can't stay home and be scared to death. I mean you've got to come out and, you know, show you're not scared, show 'em you're not scared," said Elmer Wheeler.

With 100,000 expected at the track this weekend, police can be seen at nearly every post. It's been this way at the track every year, for 10 years now.

"After the 9/11 attacks we did examine as a company our security measures, and we did take a close look at that as far as what fans can and can't bring, as well as the security at the gates," said RIR spokesperson Rich Denzler.

Travelers are still coming and going from the Richmond International Airport this weekend, but with an eye on security. Ruth Petrillo flies out of Richmond on Monday.

"I probably would have been very nervous to fly out on the 11th," Petrillo said.

"We're actually driving up to New York tonight. So we have a family reunion up there but no, I'm not nervous about it. I think it will be fine," said Paula Tylus.

Jamie Wallmeyer is visiting home from college and flies back to Alabama on Sunday, September 11th.

"I noticed it obviously, but you've got to do what you got to do. You can't plan around it. You've just got to live your life," Wallmeyer said.

Where ever you are this weekend be aware of your surroundings, and if anything gives you pause or you see something suspicious, you're asked to call police.

Richmond's mayor is urging caution as the community reflects on this day in history. There is also a terrorism hotline to report suspicious activity toll free to the state police.  That number is 877-482-8477 or 877-4VA-TIPS.

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